Posts Tagged ‘remodeling’

Welcome Gundlach’s! New to GreenHomes but 100 years in Business!

January 23, 2013




It is an honor and a pleasure to welcome our latest partner Gundlach’s Plumbing & Sheet Metal to the GreenHomes America network where we can truly help fulfill their statement, “today’s technology with good old fashioned integrity.”  It is great to see our network grow in Southern California, with this new location in Bakersfield.

Gundlach’s is a plumbing, heating, ventilation and air conditioning service provider, originating in 1900 as a plumbing repair shop.  They also provide remodeling services for bathrooms and kitchens; becoming a GreenHomes America partner, they will now include home energy retrofits, allowing homeowners to dramatically improve their home’s energy efficiency and comfort levels.

Ken Wonderly, Owner of Gundlach’s says “We feel that the home energy retrofit market is going to grow substantially over the next few years and we are very excited to be part of it”.  Too true, I can see it growing already.  Welcome aboard!

Find out more





The joys of nesting

September 6, 2011

Remodeling your home can give you insight into what has gone on all those years behind the walls.   Its also happens to be a great time to improve the energy efficency and comfort of your home. 

My ambitious sister in addition to being pregnant has decided to remodel their kitchen recently.  And why not, since future dad is a fabulous cabinet maker they plan to install some better ones that what the place came with. You know what they say about the cobbler and his children. 

I would consider this nesting in the extreme, but a recent visit gave me the opportunity not only to sleep on the floor, but better than x-ray or infrared vision I could see air leaks.  Well not really but this is a wall with holes to the attic for the wires.

 They were removing a wall and the new support is the bottom of the picture here.  But It shows what some will do to get a pipe into a wall.  The pipe was cut out since it was no longer needed but I don’t think it was necessary to cut the entire beam that to get a little pipe through  I think air can get through here as well….

 The space has a wonderful curved section of ceiling in every room.   Those are wires laying loose in the attic at the top of the picture. That means every wall leaks from any hole below like an outlet or switch or a connection to the floor below.  

Old windows? This is what is inside that’s a sash weight that counters the weight of the window as you open it.  Even though, replacing old windows won’t give you the biggest bang for the buck.  Tackle most of the air-leakage and increase the insulation in the walls and attics first. 

From an energy efficiency perspective it would be nice if things were this easy to see all the time.   But with the right people and tools it almost is.  GreenHomes America’s certified energy advisors have the experience and the skill to figure out what is going on without having to take the wall down.  My sister’s concern was a lack of insulation in the attic.  They thought they might top it up while they were fixing up the place.  It’s an excellent idea but not until some critical air sealing is tackled.  An energy advisor will investigate an attic when they can get to it, but they also “see” some of these flaws using nifty equipment such as an infrared camera or fans that help identfy a home’s leakage. 

I lent them a hand in putting in some of the cabinets while I was there to help them along and imagine they are close to done by now.  Maybe instead of baby blankets and a stroller I’ll give them a Comprehensive Energy Assessment.  I think I know a company that can help them out.

What if home improvement paid you back?

April 20, 2011

Each year, Remodeling Magazine and Realtor Magazine team up to produce the Cost vs. Value report.  The study looks at remodeling costs and resale value for more than 30 common home improvement projects.  But the report is missing one thing.  What about payback?

Many of the projects could be tweaked just a little to include some energy efficiency improvements at the same time. It’s a super-smart time to add these steps while drywall is already off and walls are already open – you cut the dust and prices later over doing these same improvements as stand alone projects.  These upgraded projects would potentially add not just value, but offer savings through reduced energy costs.

Check out this payback case study from Chicago.  The example shows how a few extra project steps could really save money through energy savings.  Let the examples inspire your own home remodeling projects!

We’ve Been Nominated for Best Green Blog!

March 4, 2011

San Diego-based Jackson Design and Remodeling has canvassed the web in search of the best green blogs, and we were chosen! Now, we’re in the running with some other great blogs for the prestigious title of Best Green Blog!

If you enjoy reading this blog and want to help us reach other people who may find our tips and insights useful, then please take 5 seconds to cast your vote! It’s that easy.

Click this Link to Vote:

Thanks for all your support!

GreenHomes and “Home Performance” in the Journal of Light Construction

October 26, 2009

JLC Sept 2009 Home Performance ContractingThanks for the great feedback from many of you on the article on “Home Performance Contracting” in the September 2009 issue of the Journal of Light Construction.  For those of you who haven’t had the chance to read it, it’s available on the GreenHomes website.   And contractors lurking out there, you should also consider subscribing to JLC—one of the best periodicals to follow to stay on top of developments in the residential and light commercial contracting sectors.


Be Smart About Remodeling

January 9, 2009

As David Crook pointed out in the Wall Street Journal this week, remodeling your home isn’t always a great investment.  Many projects won’t pay for themselves in terms of increasing the value of your home—they’ll cost you money in the long run.  But he does go on to suggest that being smart about remodeling can mitigate this.  By focusing on energy-efficiency, either in its own right or as part of a larger project, you can cut your home’s energy costs signicantly and actually make the project pay for itself.  Investing in your home makes sense—if you do it wisely.



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